Ten in-depth interviews with offbeat women, aged roughly 30 to 80, who beat the system sufficiently to prosper at such diverse occupations as bikini design, airplane charter, ranching, medical electronics, and the merchandising of such big-time capitalist items as Snoopy ashtrays. Perhaps the best known of the bunch is Vera Neumann, the ""Vera"" of placemat fame. She garbles her sentences, we are told, and lives in a Breuer house with a fabulous art collection that used to make her now-grown son want to run into his room, shut the door, and long for wall-to-wall bathroom carpeting. Vera runs her firm with a velvet-gloved steeliness that has made her the most recognized designer name in America. Another interview focuses on Gillian Mitchell and Jacqueline Baird, middle-aged British twins who were once showgirls and made their fortunes cutting and sewing bikinis in Miami. All of the interviews ramble. The writing is, basically, undistinguished, and the supporting quotes are often tasteless (re the twins: ""Even their gynecologist says they're just alike. He was amazed.""). Vera's great; the others prove that you don't have to be born male or be famous to be the real, rich McCoy.